Pictures of the Day: Italian Ship Crash, Green Zone D.C.

By James Fallows

In the unfortunate art-trouvee category, this one from the Belfast Telegraph  (thanks to many who have sent it):

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And, from the indispensable Department of Fear, a few shots of the new double-row "Green Zone D.C." fencing that is going up to build in extra buffers between the Congress and the public. The D of F suggests that this is an homage to the fondly remembered Green Zone in Iraq:

What is Green Zone D.C.?  Modeled after our former seat of government in Baghdad, Green Zone D.C. will comprise a system of fortifications designed to keep the People at a distance from Congress.  The temporary fencing we have in place today is only a beginning.

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The bunkerizing of the nation's capital is one of the big, startling-when-you-actually-notice-it transformations of my time in Washington off-and-on since the Watergate era. Through that period my wife and I have lived away for five different multi-year stretches. Usually one of the big surprises on return is how many more areas of the town are closed to traffic, full of police, walled off with blast barriers, and so on. (Hmmm, if only there were some metaphor for things that happen so gradually that you may not notice them happening day by day.) Good to see the Department of Fear keeping us alert.

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2012/01/pictures-of-the-day-italian-ship-crash-green-zone-dc/251534/